Announcing Launch of the PHN PHribbon

The Passive House embodied carbon calculator.

The Passive House Network (PHN) is happy to announce the launch of its PHN PHribbon by AECB CarbonLiteTM, a toolbar add-on for Excel, in collaboration with Building Transparency and the Association for Environment Conscious Building (AECB). This add-on enables Passive House designers to calculate the embodied carbon of a given design within the Passive House Planning Package (PHPP), an easy-to-use planning tool for energy efficiency. Integrated with the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3), PHribbon gives users unparalleled power to forecast the carbon emissions impact of their designs.

 Written by Tim Martel, a Certified Passive House Designer and Chartered Architectural Technologist, and produced by the AECB, PHribbon is an Excel add-on that makes using PHPP quicker and easier. It draws on existing national and global database information for materials and products’ environmental impact. It calculates Whole Life carbon emissions, helps users build PHPP models, and includes several useful tools and features.

Tim Martel noted, “The US version gives PH Designers quicker and easier access to their EC3 database within PHPP.  In each case the advantage of using the version in PHPP (PHribbon) is that it also calculates the Operational CO2 and combines that with the Embodied on to a single graph.” 

 The PHPP energy balance design tool contains everything necessary for designing a properly functioning Passive House, a building standard that is energy efficient, comfortable, affordable and ecological. The program prepares an energy balance and calculates the annual energy demand of the building based on the user input relating to the building’s characteristics.

 “As more leaders across the building industry are prioritizing a positive climate impact for their structures, by utilizing the PHribbon, designers can tackle both operational and embodied building carbon emissions within the PHPP tool, and comprehensively push for carbon neutral and negative buildings across the U.S.,” said Ken Levenson, Executive Director of PHN.

PHribbon leverages existing information beyond just energy, pulling from Building Transparency’s EC3 database, and EPA carbon figures for electricity, the end of life of materials, and the end-of-life pathway.

“Building Transparency’s mission is to provide the open access data and tools necessary to enable broad and swift action across the building industry in addressing embodied carbon’s role in climate change. Partnering with PHN to support programs like PHribbon furthers that mission,” said Stacy Smedley, Chair and Executive Director of Building Transparency. “We are proud to work with PHN to integrate EC3’s 50,000 materials records into the tool to help clarify whole life carbon emissions for a building’s design and influence positive procurement decisions.”

“Collaboration with PHN and Building Transparency marks a step-change in the AECB’s strategic goal to build more and stronger international partnerships. We enthusiastically welcome the positivity and synergy that is already flowing from this joint initiative,” said Andrew Simmonds, CEO of AECB.

Learn more about PHN PHribbon here.


About PHN

The Passive House Network (PHN), formerly known as NAPHN, is a 501(c)3 that provides Passive House high-performance building education and resources to professionals across the U.S. that transform how they think and work with buildings. PHN provides professionals a complete skill set to reliably produce new and renovated buildings that use dramatically less energy for effective and affordable climate action.

About Building Transparency

Building Transparency is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that provides open access data and tools that support broad and swift action across the building industry in addressing embodied carbon’s role in climate change. Formed in 2020, Building Transparency hosts, manages and maintains the Embodied Carbon in Construction Calculator (EC3) tool, which provides thousands of digitized EPDs in a free, open-source database, and Tally, the nonprofit’s Life Cycle Assessment Tool. Building Transparency strives to provide the resources and education necessary to promote adoption of the EC3 tool, including through the official materialsCAN program, and works with global policymakers to shape a better building future.

About AECB

The Association for Environment Conscious Building (AECB), is a network of individuals and companies with a common aim of promoting sustainable building. Running since the 1980’s the AECB is the largest and oldest network for sustainable building in the UK.